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Serving the Texas Hill Country for over 40 years


Signs That Your AC Compressor Needs Repair


Your air conditioner’s compressor is like the heart of the whole system. It pressurizes the refrigerant that runs through the coils, keeping it flowing so it can absorb heat from your home and then release that heat outdoors. Because the job it does is so critical, and because it is such an expensive component, keeping your compressor in good condition is your top AC priority.

If something goes wrong with your air conditioner that could put additional strain on the compressor, it needs to be repaired immediately. So what are the things that can damage your compressor, and how will you know if they happen? Here are some things to be aware of.

Refrigerant Leaks

Ice on the evaporator coils of your indoor unit, a hissing sound, a sweet chemical smell, and a drop in cooling power are all clues that you might have a damaged spot on your coils that has begun to leak refrigerant. Without enough refrigerant in the system, the compressor can overheat and burn out completely. Don’t ignore these signs! Call a professional to fix your air conditioning in Boerne, TX.


If something gets into the compressor that shouldn’t be there, it can do a lot of damage. This could be refrigerant, if you’ve had repairs done by an amateur who overfilled the system. It could be oil, particularly if your air conditioner’s outdoor unit is sinking or tilting from eroding soil underneath it. Or it could be dirt or water. If your air conditioner isn’t working as well as it should and you suspect one of these is possible, get a technician out to take a look.

Dirty Coils

The coils need to be able to absorb and release heat easily. When there’s something coating them, like dust bunnies covering the evaporator coils or dried-on mud splatter caking the condenser coils, they are too well-insulated to absorb and release heat. This can lead to an air conditioner that just won’t keep your home cool, or even ice on your evaporator coils, which acts as more insulation and worsens the problem. When the refrigerant can’t change temperature easily, the compressor is put under a lot of strain.

Lack of Lubrication

During annual maintenance, the moving parts like fans and motors are lubricated. Without this service, they experience much more friction and create a lot of heat, which can also burn out the compressor.

Compressor Repair

This is not actually a component that can be taken apart and fixed. When something threatens your compressor, your options are limited. Ideally, you can catch the problem before your compressor fails, which is why prompt repair is so important. If your air conditioner is still under warranty (which generally requires annual maintenance) the manufacturer may cover the cost of replacing the compressor. But if it’s an older air conditioner, replacing such an expensive part doesn’t make much sense. The rest of the components will still be on their last legs, so it’s usually a better financial choice to invest in a new air conditioner instead. 

Contact D’Spain Sales & Service to talk to a member of our team about your air conditioning concerns.

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